Here are some more quotes from today, this time from HEAD COACH MIKE SHANAHAN --
"To be honest with you, during the season it's a pretty good grind. To put everything you could possibly do into six or seven months of work is always tough. After the season's over with, I like the time off, but it's short with things you have to get done. With free agency, the draft and all the camps, it's always tough to end the season like we did. You work hard to put the best team together in the offseason and a good evaluation of the draft. Now we are ready, and I am pretty optimistic."
On what was accomplished during OTAs --
"We had 15, and you're allowed 17. It's really a must now. You've got about a third of your football team that turns over every year, you've got guys who have to get used to your terminology and the system that you are using. Every year, you have to play the games. The camps are a little shorter this year. We have to start later than most teams due to (the) collective bargaining (agreement)."
On training camp not being the `right of passage' as it used to be --
"We have to get everybody back in football shape. You can work out, you can run and lift, but until you put those pads on and get in football shape, it just doesn't come naturally. We just need to get everyone in football shape to get used to all the bumps and bruises. It's a tough part of training camp."
On the excitement of having RB Travis Henry, TE Daniel Graham and CB Dre Bly added to the club in the offseason --
"You get a real good feel for these guys. You get a real good feel for the veterans because you can watch them play during the season. For Travis Henry, all you have to do is go back and watch him play at Tennessee. Daniel Graham is the same thing. It's a little tougher for the guys coming out of college. You are projecting how they will play against the top personnel. We won't really know until training camp begins and the pads come on."
On contact during training camp --
"I think everyone likes contact in training camp. We have always been a team that has a lot of contact during preseason. We have some run (contact) drills and a lot of five-on-seven drills."
On WR Rod Smith's progression from hip surgery --
"Right now he is on PUP (active/physically unable to perform list), and he is working out with (Broncos Strength and Conditioning Coach) Rich (Tuten). When we feel that he is able to practice, we will take him off PUP. Brandon Stokley is on PUP and is working out, too. When we feel like he can practice in two-a-days, than we will take him off PUP. It never helps you when you are not practicing."
On the range of wide receivers going into camp --
"We have 11 guys on our football team at the wide receiver position. We can go eight or nine in practice, and that's not bad. You can still get the defensive backs a lot of reps, and any time you are four deep or more, you are in pretty good shape. Brandon Stokley and Brandon Marshall are here, and let's just hope they stay healthy."
On the shortness of training camp --
"Like I have said before, the last 15 days of having football-related drills, you come back and it is a little tougher. Once you start training camp and can start having practice twice a day, not only will you evaluate them on a day-to-day basis, but in the games and how they can handle themselves under pressure. The time we will have with the Dallas Cowboys will help us in evaluating during the training process."
On the Broncos will stack up against other AFC teams this year --
"Obviously the AFC is very, very strong. One of the reasons these teams are so competitive is that everyone has a legitimate chance of winning the big one, and that's what you want. When you look at a guy like Dre Bly, he comes in as a starter on the first day. During OTAs, he looked exceptionally good. A guy like Daniel Graham, who has had an obvious amount of success, a lot of times you can't bring a guy in like that coming in after the draft. You have a guy like Travis Henry, who obviously had a very successful year. We feel good not only with the guys we have as starters, but the other guys we have brought in have depth. Look at Patrick Ramsey, guys that have a chance to compete on that level of the National Football League. You have to find guys who can make a difference on the team. We tried to address that on the defensive line position. Hopefully this will give us the chance to do something special if we can get into the playoffs."
On someone stepping up as the leader on the team --
"To be a leader, you have to play well. You have to show it on the practice field and on game day, and that is what we are looking for. Who those leaders will be, I can't tell you. The actual leaders that we all know, you look at guys like John Lynch. How he handles himself on and off the football field. Champ Bailey is the same way. The guys that work are proven players and are the leaders. These younger guys must have the type of work ethic that the older players have. If that happens, you have a special team. Everyone is signed and we are ready to go."
On how Jay Cutler has improved during the offseason --
"Jay Cutler becomes a leader when he wants to be one. He can do everything he wants to during the offseason, and he does, but until he knows what it takes in the offseason, he has got to do it on gameday. Ultimately everyone will be judged on gameday."
On having Terrell Davis named to Broncos' Ring of Fame --
"Obviously it is very well-deserved. I don't know how you get a better person and football player than Terrell Davis. We don't win those Super Bowls without Davis. A lot of people talk about the system all the time, but people don't realize how great a person Terrell Davis was to this program. To see him named to the Ring of Fame, it is very special."
On the upcoming season --
"I'm excited every year. The reason why you are in this game is to win and to win a championship. I'm excited because of the work we have done in the offseason for this program."